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ARCHITECTURE: Etching by Wendel Dietterlin



A stunning detailed etching with architectural details was made for the first edition of the revolutionary work by Wendel Dietterlin (c.1550–1599), who introduced the Five Architectural Orders by Vitruvius and Italian Renaissance elements north of the Alps. First edition, printed on fine handmade paper, with wide margins.  

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This sheet with finely etched image showcasing architectural elements was made for the first, 1598 edition of Architectura. Von Außtheilung, Symmetria vnd Proportion der Fünff Seulen, und aller darauß volgender Kunst Arbeit, von Fenstern, Caminen… by Wendel Dietterlin (c.1550–1599). The book was the first elaborate work to introduce the Five Architectural Orders north of Alps.

The book mixes the Tuscan, Doric, Ionic order, Corinthian and Composite orders with fantastic figures and elements into unusual forms of German Mannerism, sometimes called the Northern Renaissance. Architectura was highly influential in the early 17th century in Germany and also on the court of Rudolf II.

The work was reprinted many times in the next decades. The etchings in this first edition excel themselves by especially fine lines, which were lost in the later reprints. The work was also printed on especially fine soft paper, adding a special three dimensional feeling to the etchings.

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